November – Reading, Watching, Listening

Reading books, watching TV and listening to podcasts to me is all part of the job of being a writer. At least that’s what I tell myself when I’m hooked on a series and will do anything to binge watch it.

And word of mouth and reviews is the best way to spread the love of book, tv, podcast consumption. So, this is me, spreading the love. 

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What Am I Reading?

My reading has been fairly eclectic this month from light-hearted rom coms to Icelandic murders in the 1800’s.

I chose Nicola May’s Love Me Tinder because I wanted to see what a successful self-published rom-com book looked like.  Turns out it looks pretty much the same as a traditionally published book! Love Me Tinder is the story of Calli Summers whose marriage has ended and she opens her eyes to the world of online dating. With lots of short chapters and a lot of hilarious as well as cringe worthy dates this was a very easy read. Plus it had just the right amount of steaminess for me; as in, enough to make my eyes bulge but not so much I’m giggling over words like member and throbbing.  

I have had Burial Rites by Hannah Kent in my bookshelf for so long but kept putting it off because it seemed like it would be a heavy book. I shouldn’t have worried. The Icelandic setting of Burial Rites is so beautiful it’s almost a character in itself. I loved reading about the way the houses were built the way the harvest is done, the clothes they wore and their everyday very hard life. I have found myself googling for images of Icelandic houses in the 1800’s. But the story is not about Icelandic homes it is a fictional account of Agnes Magnusdottir, Iceland’s last female convicted murderer sentenced to death. The story follows her final days staying with a farming family and the spiritual guidance she receives from the seemingly ill-equipped assistant reverend, Toti. It makes you realise there is always another side to every story.

What Am I Watching?

Years and Years. SBS you never fail to deliver. Years and Years is so disturbing and I love it! Set in a dystopian future it flows the Lyons family over the course of fifteen years and how the world changes through actions taken right now. It touches on digital media, the lack of antibiotics, bank collapses, nuclear war, refugees, everything that is swirling around us in a political whirlpool now is given a future glimpse. It is quite terrifying to watch but also though provoking enough to leave you wondering what can we do now to have better outcomes for the future?

Last Christmas. I just could not wait for this movie. I really try and hold off any Christmas celebrations to December but I do love a good Christmas rom-com and am hoping every year there will be a new one that helps Love Actually carry the load. I don’t know if this will be one I watch year after year but it’s definitely recommended. I did spend the first half of the movie feeling disappointed that it was one of those cheesy rom-coms where the female is a messed up, alcoholic clutz who has the perfect man in love with her supposedly because he likes being with someone who constantly cocks up??  But, stay with it. This movie turns into something so lovely with many layers making it a cheesy rom-com but with depth.

Emilia Clarke plays Kate a young woman who has gone through a sickness and can’t seem to kick start her life again until she meets Tom. The George Michael and Wham soundtrack is a nice touch but it is very much a side dish to the movie.

I did love Kate’s outfits which had a decidedly nineties feel about them but in a good way. I wanted to dust off my chunky boots, striped tops and floral dresses and wear them all together again.

I want to give it 4 stars but I’m trying to be a bit hard nosed and will go 3.5 stars.

Anyone got any recommendations? In particular Christmas movie recommendations?

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